On NBC’s Meet Meet the Press Sunday, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa announced that the Committee will formally ask the Benghazi Accountability Review Board co-chairs, Ambassador Thomas Pickering and Admiral Mike Mullen, to submit to bipartisan depositions with Committee investigators. The Oversight and Reform Committee is interested in hearing the co-chairs’ response to assertions made by career State Department officials that the ARB report and process was flawed and let senior officials off the hook.
Before the House Benghazi hearing, last Wednesday, Joseph Di Genova, who is representing State Dept. Whistleblower, Mark Thompson declared that the hearing would indicate that the Accountability Review Board conducted by General Pickering and Admiral Mullen would prove to have been a cover-up - “one of the worst jobs ever done in the history of governmental reporting” partly because they didn’t bother to interview the Sec. of State for their report.
After today’s interview, Ambassador Pickering told Chairman Issa that both he and Admiral Mullen would accept the invitation.
“There are three distinct areas that haven’t been answered. First of all, a full understanding of why urgent requests repeatedly for more security before the attacks were denied. We’ve had statements that it wasn’t about money, but at the same time, people are asking for more security – they got less. The British ambassador has two assassination attempts and yet we keep a facility that was not able to withstand even a few minutes of attack. Then, those seven hours while the attack was going on: Was the response correct? Could it have been better? Why wasn’t – why weren’t things at least tried or revved up to be tried? Those are important questions. And then afterwards, how could you change talking points twelve times from what seems to be relatively right to what seems to be completely wrong.”
Issa on Next Step in Investigation:
“On Monday, I’ll be sending Ambassador Pickering a request for a deposition. We’re going to want to go through at length how the ARB reached its conclusions, who it interviewed, and why we believe there are shortcomings .. We have one witness who says I wanted to be interviewed and I wasn’t. One of the questions that came out of our hearing, Gregory Hicks – the acting ambassador – has not been allowed to look at the classified ARB report even though he is the foremost authority on at least what was happening in Tripoli and what the communication was.”
[After the interview, Ambassador Pickering told Chairman Issa that both he and Admiral Mullen would accept the invitation.]
Pickering Declines to Defend White House on Dishonest Account of Events:
David Gregory: “The Press Secretary to the President, Jay Carney, said back in November … this is what he said:”
Carney (video): “The White House and State Department have made clear that the single adjustment that was made to those talking points by either of these two institutions were changing the word ‘consulate’ to ‘diplomatic facility’ because consulate was inaccurate. Those talking points originated from the intelligence community, they reflected the IC’s best assessments of what they thought had happened.”
Gregory: “We know that’s not accurate. We know that, in fact, the State Department, Victoria Nuland was involved in removing from the talking points previous warnings about security and references to a terrorist group – an extremist group – being involved in the attack based on what was being reported on the ground and by intelligence. Is the Administration guilty of playing politics with terrorism?”
Pickering: “With full respect, the Accountability Review Board was there to look at the question of security. We did not examine talking points after the fact. It was not in our remit.”
If you were a journalist reporting on Benghazi whistleblower Gregory Hicks, wouldn’t you find it interesting that he was a Democrat who voted for Barack Obama twice?
Someone at NBC News didn’t according to Hicks’s attorney Victoria Toensing who disclosed the spike job to NewsMax host Steve Malzberg on WMAL radio Saturday
VICTORIA TOENSING: By the way, Mr. Hicks is a Democrat. He voted for Hillary – I’ve yet to announce this – he voted for Hillary in the primary and Obama twice. You know what? NBC spiked the story where I told it before the hearings. It’s just amazing what the press is still trying to do to cover this up
I’m sure Petraeus is fuming after Carney threw him under he bus on Friday.
ABC Report: Petraeus’ Reaction To Revised Benghazi TPs: “I Would Just As Soon Not Use Them” (May 12, 2013)
I’m sure Petraeus is fuming after Carney threw him under he bus on Friday.ABC Report: Petraeus’ Reaction To Revised Benghazi TPs: “I Would Just As Soon Not Use Them” (May 12, 2013)
FrontPageMagazine: Blood on Their Hands:
Lady Macbeth may have been one of literature’s most famous villains, but at least she had the guilty conscience to eventually try and wash the blood off her hands.It is doubtful that Hillary Rodham Clinton will start hallucinating bloody spots on her palms during the book tour for her upcoming 14-million-dollar tome or compulsively washing her hands during the 2016 campaign.
If she does make it into the White House, it is even more doubtful that she will wander it in a nightgown crying out for the blood that can never be washed away. Real life villains are more likely to ask what difference it makes; the solipsistic query of the sociopath to whom the feelings of others are abstract things.
“The order to actually engage troops in a rescue operation has to come from the president unless it’s a military facility and then the commander has certain authorities. But it has to come from the president to put troops in harm’s way. Now, in that case, because we don’t know enough of the details, that could have come from the commander from the Africa command who told them to stand down. But play that all the way out, who told him not to allow them to… You are under attack, we are going to be there. That was the whole point of it. And so to say that we didn’t know enough, I don’t buy that. I think that is incredible and I think someone needs to be taken to task over it.”